Successful businesses have evolved way past just brick and mortar establishments. They’re focusing on outreach and a building greater audience, and that begins with building an internet presence for your business, no matter how big or small it is.
5 Ways To Build A Simple Website for Your Small Business
The first thing to get there would be building a website, or building a better website. It’s easier than you probably think to build a website, but there are some fundamentals you should stick to to make it the most effective for your business.
Know what your website is for.
Before you set up your website, you need to decide what your website will communicate. Most businesses set up their websites as information and interaction fronts, which helps them build an audience online.
This type of website is the most simple and straightforward as it intends only to communicate information to your audience, whether the content is photos, videos, or text.
A more popular type of website lately involves using your website as an online marketplace and building an online store to conduct your business through the internet. This type of website will involve different tools, as you will need a service to manage the payments from your customers online. Sites that are marketing services, not products, will often have demonstrations or calls to action so people can connect with the business off-site.
However, whatever type of website you choose to build, you should strive for ease of access and clarity in information. Use your homepage to deliver your business ethos as clearly and concisely as possible.
Select your domain name and web address.
Once you know what your website will be about, you can begin to decide on a web address for it. Your domain name is very important because you will be sharing the URL with potential business partners and clients.
Read also: How to build a blog for your business
Not to mention that this web address will be your business representation to the global community. Therefore, you need a name that is straightforward, easy to remember and represents your business accurately.
Many things can go wrong here. Your business name might be a popular choice for many other people who own businesses by the same name, and they may already have business websites with that name. There are tools to check the availability of certain domains.
In that case, when your choice of web address is not available, you may have to get creative. You can choose to experiment with other names that your business goes by, you could use hyphens or other symbols to distinguish your name, or, if you really want the web address that the other company has, you could proceed to buy that address from said company.
One important thing to remember with the web address is that it has two parts, which are the name or web address and the TLD or top level domain. This refers to the suffix at the end of your web address like .com or .biz or .net.
Over the last couple of years, businesses have gotten creative with these TLD names, but it is not necessary for you to do so. Remember that the purpose of your website name is not to be as unique as it can be with too many characters or symbols, but to redirect your audience to your home page easily.
Find a reliable web host.
Your website identifies your hosting needs.
Web hosting is important because a web host is a server where all of your website data is stored so it can be accessed via the internet. As a small business, you will need to find an external host to host the web content because the cost of hosting your data in-house can often be too expensive. You can also employ a hosting service to save yourself time and frustration as your site grows.
This will require time and research as you will have to think about the location of your web host and the budget you will have to allocate to hosting. You can choose to share your server with other websites though there’s a chance that this can slow down your site.
You could also provide a dedicated server that will only address people who access your web content. This will not compromise your site access, but may increase hosting costs. Remember that as your business progresses, you may have to switch hosts, so always keep up with the research on the top hosting companies.
Set up your website.
Once you’ve taken care of the hosting details, you can proceed to build your website. You can use simple web hosting apps to make things easier for you in terms of hosting and building the website. WIX, WordPress, and blogger are good examples.
You may need to create lots of pages for your website to add all kinds of details about your product and your company. You also may need to set up a blog for updates. The primary aim here is to adhere to the goal of creating a website as an information portal for your business. You may want to create an official introduction page to introduce your company formally.
Embedding a contact page into your website is also a good idea that allows customers to get in touch with you easily. It is best to stay clear from stock photos and instead employ a professional photographer to take high-quality pictures of your products to make your business distinct.
Take care of finishing details.
Once your web content is up, you can now tackle the finishing details for the website. Set up your payment system if you intend to double this website as an e-commerce marketplace. Test out your website on various browsers to see if it runs smoothly or if it requires changes.
Set up an analytics page so you can analyze how your website performs over time in terms of traffic. This will help you track popular keywords to optimize audience reach so you can plan your social media and marketing strategies accordingly.
Since making a website and continuously managing it can be a difficult task which demands time, you can make things easier for yourself by using an external service to help you out with website management.
Kiley Martin is a freelance writer, editor and blogger from Philadelphia, PA. She has worked with several popular blogs and magazines. She recently graduated from Drexel University. She also enjoys mentoring and connecting with others on new technologies in web development and programming. Feel free to contact her at KileyAMartin@gmail.com